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Understanding Net Promoter Score | Measure NPS in 2023

There are many ways for a business to receive ratings. If you own a restaurant, you might check up on your company’s Yelp reviews. There are also Google reviews, Facebook reviews, etc. While all of these can be incredibly important, there’s another score you’ll want to keep an eye on: the Net Promoter Score.

Do you need help understanding Net Promoter Score is? I totally get it. That’s why I’m here to show you what a Net Promoter System is and what it can mean for your business.

In this post, you’ll learn about a Net Promoter Score, NPS score ranges, what’s a good NPS, and much more.

What’s a Net Promoter Score (NPS)?

A Net Promoter Score (NPS) is the total of an equation used to measure how often someone would recommend a business to another person. This total is the number of people who would recommend your business minus those who wouldn’t recommend your company to others.

NPS Score Ranges (Understanding Net Promoter Scores)

To simplify an NPS score, it’s a way for someone to rate your business from 1-10. In this type of survey, 10 is the best score a business can receive and 1 is the worst.

With an NPS score, things are a little bit different.

Promoters (Giving scores in the 9-10 range)

a happy person with a yellow background

Promoters are people who will not only be repeat customers, but they’ll often refer your business to others. As you can imagine, these are the scores you want your company to receive.

Generally speaking, people giving out these scores will be loyal customers or new customers who are extremely happy with your company. Pat yourself on the back, this is where you want people to be in your customer journey.

It’s also a good idea to help ensure these people contribute to your company’s growth. You can do this by having them become brand ambassadors or join your company’s loyalty program. After doing this, you incentivize people to spread word-of-mouth marketing about your business.

Passives (Scores in the 7-8 range)

a confused person

Passive customers are overall satisfied with your company and its products. However, they’re not going to often be loyal. This means they could be easily persuaded to buy from another company. They’re not loyal to your business right now. And they’re not likely referring it out to anyone.

While receiving a 7 or 8 from a survey respondent is a great starting point, a part of understanding net promoter scores means knowing that your business can do more with these individuals. Think about reaching out to learn why these people didn’t give your business high NPS scores.

Detractors (Scores in the 0-6 range)

angry person shouting into a telephone

According to the NPS survey, anyone with this score range can be harmful to your brand. This is because anyone with a 0-6 score is more likely to spread negative word-of-mouth about your business. They’re known as detractors.

More often than not, people giving scores on the lower end of this range are extremely unhappy customers.

Overall, I bet that these NPS score ranges probably didn’t look like what you expect. If you’re like me, scoring a 7 or better is considered pretty good, 4 to 6 isn’t bad, and it gets worse from there. Not the case with a net promoter system.

An important aspect of understanding net promoter scores means using them to find out what your company is doing right and wrong. With a focus on improving things, you should see your company’s Net Promoter Score continue rising.

How to Calculate Net Promoter Score

a calculator

Generally speaking, a Net Promoter Score that’s over 50 is considered excellent. You’re creating brand ambassadors. An overall score of 20 or more would be a favorable score. An NPS score above 0 is considered good. When your overall score goes negative, this might be a sign of problems.

Now, we can get to calculating a Net Promoter Score. This calculation is done by subtracting your promoters from your detractors. I know that can sound a little weird so let’s look at this another way.

Let’s say that your company received 200 reviews. Out of these reviews:

  • 100 were promoters (9-10)
  • 80 were passive (7-8)
  • 20 were detractors (0-6)

Your company’s NPS score would be 100 – 20 = 80.

The advantages of using an NPS system

Are you on the fence about using NPS surveys to learn about the customer experience? Then, check out these advantages of the NPS concept.

thumbs up and thumbs down

Before your business start understanding Net Promoter Score (NPS) campaign, it’s good to know the advantages and disadvantages of this system. Net promoter scores can tell you a lot about your business, but they might not give you a complete picture. Here’s more information about the pros and cons of net promoter scores.

Finding Out Other People’s Opinions

The main advantage of the Net Promoter Score is that it’s a way for a company to find out how others feel about it. Many proponents of the Net Promoter Score note that it can indicate how likely a customer is likely to do repeat business with a company.

Makes Feedback Fun

Another benefit of the NPS system is that it uses what’s known as the gamification process. Gamification is a fancy way of saying that something has game-like elements. In this case, gamification uses a scoring system.

When you see your company’s score (unless you’ve done everything perfectly), you’re likely going to feel motivated to increase it.

Drawbacks of NPS surveys

A net promoter survey is a great way to learn about the customer experience. But there are a few drawbacks of the net promoter system.

Might Not Give the Complete Picture

The main disadvantage of an NPS system came from “A Longitudinal Examination of NetPromoter and Firm Revenue Growth.” In this paper, it’s noted that the NPS system’s focus on a ‘likelihood to recommend’ question doesn’t tell a company everything it needs to know.

Possible Low Participation Rates

Unfortunately, it’s incredibly rare for any survey to have a 100% participation rate. How many people take your NPS survey depends its length. It’s understandable to be excited about your business, but even the most enthusiastic customers have their limits.

If a survey takes more than 10-15 minutes for someone to complete, and they’re not getting paid for it, you’re probably asking a little too much.

Creating a NPS Survey for Maximum Customer Satisfaction

a person creating a survey

At this point, you have a decent understanding of net promoter scores used to tell you more about the customer experience. But you might be wondering how you can create an NPS survey of your own. That’s exactly what I’m about to help you with.

Finding Out Background Information

When you’re getting customer feedback, it’s usually good to find out as much as comfortably possible about your customers. Some companies go for the bare minimum and ask for a name and email address. This is so that a company can remain in contact with a survey participant.

Finding out more about survey takers is a great if use customer segments. A customer segment is a term for grouping customers based on their interests, income level, and other attributes.

Getting Your 1-10 Rating

After gaining some background information, it’s time for your survey takers to give your company its Net Promoter Score. This is the magic moment where, using a net promoter system, a person gives your business a rating (typically 1-10).

It’s understandable to assume that this rating is the Net Promoter Score of your company. But that’s not quite right. Instead, you’ll use the calculation mentioned earlier to get your company’s Net Promoter Score.

Digging Deeper With Open-Ended Questions

It’s now time to dig deeper regarding understanding a net promoter score by using some open-ended questions. Getting answers to these questions, especially after your business receives a rating, can tell you much more about your company’s customer experience.

Open-ended questions aren’t ones that can be answered with a simple yes or no. Instead, this crucial part of Net Promoter Score surveys involve questions like:

Why did you give our company this rating?

Besides getting an actual net promoter score, the other essential thing to find out is why your business got the rating it received. If a person has come this far in the NPS survey process, you’ll likely get an answer to this question.

Something I recommend is not using character or word limits in this text box. Whether a customer has a negative word or positive word to say about your business, make sure they have enough space to do it.

I personally remember a few times where I wanted to leave feedback on a company’s website and became frustrated by tiny character limits! If you’re like me, it’s hard to give feedback about a customer experience when you only have 200 characters.

Getting detailed response from either satisfied customers or unhappy customers can be incredibly value. This portion of  understanding net promoter scores could uncover problems you never knew about.

Why Did you choose our business over competitive offerings?

Basically, including this question in your NPS framework lets your business know how it compares to the competition. Understanding how customers feel about your business is great. But learning customer perception about your business compared to the competition can be even more valuable information.

Sure, your company can visit competitors’ websites and social media pages to find out what they’re up to. However, new customers tend to see much more than you or your employees will regarding the competition.

If your NPS survey uncovers that competitors are doing a lot of things better than your business, this in information worth acting on. Asking this question in a net promoter score survey can also yield information about what makes your company preferred over the competition.

What’s Your favorite product or service we offer?

Many companies aim to provide the best possible customer experience by offering a range of products and services. With that in mind, understanding net promoter scores can let you find out what products or services customers like the most. This question is a great starting point for promoting certain products and discontinuing other ones.

Following Up

The next stage of understanding a Net Promoter Score is, unfortunately, one that many companies either forget about or avoid. It’s following up with your customers. After all, how do you know if your changes lead to customer satisfaction if you’re not asking them?

Make things easy for you and them by asking for permission to follow up after your participants take their NPS surveys.

No matter whether your company gets good or bad NPS scores, following up with survey respondents is an important final step in the net promoter score process. Following up with these people gives you even more of an in-depth look into the customer experience.

I’m certainly no perfect writer. And from working in customer service roles, neither are many customers. Sometimes, it feels like you need something to decipher feedback from people. Chances are, the NPS data in this question will uncover things your company wants to know more about.

Let’s say that someone gave your business a good NPS score and loved how well Stephen from sales worked with them. Wouldn’t you like to know what Stephen did that this customer loved so much? Asking follow up questions is a major part of understanding net promoter scores.

On the flipside, let’s say that you got a low score and lots of negative NPS-related emoticons due to a bad interaction with an employee. Following up can uncover an employee-related issue that you need to fix fast.

Reaching out is also a great way to promote customer loyalty. Some customers will be happy to hear that a customer’s representative personally reached out to them. The people who let your calls go to voicemail will still appreciate you tried to follow-up. Some might even call or email you back.

These questions can help your business go a long way towards understanding net promoter scores. They can also give your business deep insights as to why it has happy or unhappy customers. You’ll learn about things that impede growth as well as why you’re creating loyal enthusiasts.

In conclusion, understanding net promoter scores (NPS) works is important for many companies. With that said, it is a method that has detractors. Regardless of how you feel about this method, consider giving it a shot. Your company’s NPS might provide more valuable insights than you think.

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